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It is always logical to know a company’s customer service number, especially if you are using their products or services.

CenturyLink and Their Series of Outage Issues with Different Reasons

18March
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There is nothing fun with an outage. Electricity outage will leave you stay in the dark and not being able to do anything until everything gets back on again. The same thing also happens to cellular or internet outage. Since our world today depends so much on communication, cellular feedbacks, and the internet connections, having an outage will definitely cause chaos and damages – not to mention that grumpy and disgruntled customers will make complaints.

The same thing happened to CenturyLink where they experienced cellular and internet outage back then in Thursday, March the 12th 2015. After nine hours of being ‘left in the dark’ the service was finally restored – but not after some bad damages had been done. Apparently, the outage was caused by Kit Carson Electric Cooperative crew digging a hole and severed the cables instead. The crew was responsible for digging a hole so they can install a new electric service pole near the Valle Escondido entrance. Unfortunately, they had a misspot and they severed the fiber optic cable owned by CenturyLink in the process.

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Luis Reyes, the CEO from Kit Carson, claimed that the crew was responsible for cutting off the line, but they had actually followed the procedures and protocols to identify any buried lines before digging. Unfortunately, despite their best efforts and careful calculations, they misspot. Because of the severed lines that are responsible for the cell phone and internet connection, the service around Taos was affected and couldn’t be used for nine hours.

An official spokesperson from CenturyLink claims that they have dispatched their crews to fix the damages, but they haven’t made any estimation of when it can be repaired or how long the process will take. It is not known whether the damages can be fixed right away or it takes very delicate handling because it has complicated all sectors and matters. Nevertheless, a reporter right on site claims that the crew needs to dig a deep trench (around 30 feet to 40 feet) before the affected line can be spliced.

The outage was reported a little before noon, and by 5:15 PM, CenturyLink’s outage report to Public Regulation Commission stated that around 9,100 customers were affected and they were left without service at all. It seems that the cable was cut in seven feet underground depth, so it should be easily spotted by the Kit Carson’s crew before digging. Previously, the similar line cuts have affected all provides and also internet users, including TaosNet DSL customers, Kit Carson Telecom, and also CenturyLink. Those who are trying to call the cell phones within the area would only encounter busy signal. The good thing is that the landlines weren’t affected at all. However, some were concerned that the 911 calls would also be affected, including the one expressed by Arcy Baca, the Public Regulation commission executive assistant.

So far, CenturyLink has been asking people in Red River to call (575) 754-6166 for emergency situation. This is the fourth incidents within the area that have led to a blackout. The first one was caused by a bullet cutting off an overhead line. The second one was caused by beaver chewing off the cable. The third and fourth incidents were caused by construction teams and crews responsible for installing posts for other services.

Other Outages in Other States

This isn’t the first internet and cellular outage experienced by CenturyLink around Taos. Apparently, the company has experienced similar experiences in different states for different reasons. In Arizona, phone, cellular, and internet services were cut off because of vandalism, leading to concerns that terrorists could be responsible for it since they tampered with American infrastructure.

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Half of Arizona was experiencing internet, phone, and cellular outage after vandalism activity cut off the sensitive optic cable, raising concerns that the US infrastructure is vulnerable. The outage, happening in Wednesday in February, was affecting important services where people couldn’t access the internet, used their phones, or even used the ATM cards. What’s crucial was that important and critical services like state government database, hospitals, police, and banks were also deeply affected, resulting in chaos and damages.

When the blackout happened, interruptions starting to happen from Phoenix to northern areas like Prescott, Cotton Wood, and Sedona. According to Alex Juarez, a spokesperson from CenturyLink, the severed optic cable is running from Phoenix to the northern side of Arizona. It was clearly the action of vandalism since the optic cable is basically composed of very protected and thick cable with metal pipes encasing the cable. It seems that the cable was cut with a hacksaw in a very straight cut. So far, the police have been investigating the incidents, not knowing the motive yet.

CenturyLink was moving fast to respond the outage. They went quickly to the location and assessed how severe the damage was. They were able to fix all the damages and got the service ready to back again very early in the Thursday morning. Juarez claims that the company is very concerned about their security system and they are very careful in managing their protection. They understand that business and customers are heavily affected whenever there is an outage; that’s why they put such incidents into their priority lists because they don’t want critical service like hospitals or banks to be deeply affected.

National Security Issue?

Meanwhile, issues of vandalism targeting US infrastructure have been developing fast and greatly. In different states, vandals have been responsible for electric grid damages and power transformer lines destruction. Whether it is the work of international or domestic terrorist, the threat is clear: the US infrastructure is vulnerable and has been the target of attacks. Some security experts even suspect that it is not merely the act of vandalism, but more like an act of intentional sabotage. They are concerned if the vandals are going to target both crucial objects at the same time, like a cell tower and fiber optic cable.

They encourage Federal Energy Regulatory Committee (FERC) as well as The North American Electric Reliability Corporation (NERC) to strengthen their security front and improve the electrical infrastructure to deal with threats and attacks.

Different Impacts of Expedia Acquiring Orbitz

17March
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Not many people understand that a business plan can affect different elements related to the industry, including the plan for purchase or sales. It seems what happens to Expedia with their expansion plan, including acquiring Orbitz Worldwide, the third biggest online traveling firm in America. Orbitz, a Chicago based company, has been responsible for cheaptickets.com and orbitz.com, and it will certainly add to Expedia’s popularity and expansion number when they manage to get Orbitz under their wing.

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The plan to buy Orbitz was released on the 12th of February 2015, and since then has stirred some responses and opinions. Expedia is willing to pay Orbitz for $12 a share with cash, resulting in total worth of $1.6 billion of transaction. So far, positive feedbacks and approvals have been coming from the boards of directors, but they still need to wait for regulatory approval to go further. Somehow, there are some concerns and negative feedbacks about Expedia’s recent aggressive activities by acquiring different companies from different continents. With the company acquiring wotif from Australia and decolar from Latin America, a lot of people are concerned that the online traveling world will be fully dominated by Expedia. Not to mention that their decision to buy Orbitz will only strengthening their position.

However, Expedia doesn’t seem to be affected by the negative concerns and comments, since they keep on moving on with their expansion planning. They have acquired Travelocity on the 23rd of January with $280 million of exchange, and they expect for the Orbitz deal close to happen around the second half in 2015. A lot of people are wondering how the impact of Orbitz acquisition to stakeholders as well as the customers. If you want to know, read on.

About Orbitz

The Orbitz Worldwide was set up in 2000 in the form of shared booking organization by different airlines, covering Delta Air Lines, United Airlines, Continental Airlines, American Airlines, and Northwest Airlines. Since it was first established, it has suffered from changes in ownership, which basically obstructs its development. Besides ownership changes, they also suffered from lack of management and direction, although the OTA industry has grown quite well and promisingly. With additional of poor strategic decision and internal conflicts to make things worse, the company’s growth has been obstructed and hindered.

Yes, Orbitz may be the third biggest companies in online traveling business in America, but when compared to the other competitors like Priceline and Expedia, they are far left behind. Just imagine, Expedia was able to gain 24% room night growth in 2014 alone, while Priceline gained 27%. Orbitz managed to stay behind with only 19% growth, which is quite sad. But Expedia managed to see the hidden potential and how the company will be able to grow strong when managed and run properly and correctly. Moreover, if Expedia is able to merge with Orbitz, they can reach bigger markets and coverage, which will be beneficial for both of them.

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The Benefits for Each

Naturally, when Expedia decided to acquire Orbitz, they are expecting bigger profits and benefits. The deal will affect them in different manners: • Orbitz has $12 million worth of gross bookings now, which is good for Expedia’s profit and growth. Moreover, Expedia can also enjoy Orbucks loyalty program and partner networks from Orbitz. This scheme alone will increase the numbers of accommodations and hotels available for Expedia clients, increasing its operational scale as well as availability for the customers from all around the world. • Orbitz is known for its strong technology base and team, and they should help in Expedia’s sharing practice. Big time. • Orbitz is known for its advanced airfare search technology, which can be used to combine fares for different airlines. This is not only helpful, but also handy for clients to get easier and simpler search. • Orbitz has good management in displaying results that fit customers’ preferences as well as requirements. It doesn’t focus on the ones with the best payment to the booking sites.

Moreover, the value for global online traveling market is around $1.3 trillion today, and with Expedia has 5% of it, you can only imagine how much profits involved and generated. It is quite understandable if Expedia is striving hard to get bigger share of the market. After all, the company is able to see the promising future where online travel will increase from year to year, and the numbers of profits on future basis will be unbelievable. It isn’t enough for Expedia that they have owned 75% of the American’s online traveling market; they should gain more and more.

Impacts for Hotels

Aside from the lucrative profits awaiting for Expedia on future platform, there are also some impacts experienced by the partnering hotels – although the results may not be all positive and bright. First of all, they may have to pay higher commissions to Expedia, considering that less OTAs are left available within the market. Wotif, for instance, has increased their charges to 15% from the previous 12% since they have been acquired by Expedia. Moreover, since more hotels are included within Expedia’s networks, they basically have to compete between one another in order to make customers attracted to them. Another not-so-good impact is happening to the hotels when they have to increase their efforts in making customers wanting to book directly into their own sites – not through Expedia. It is safe to say that Expedia is experiencing the best result and outcome, while others are left struggling.

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Impacts for Customers

Customers, especially, can enjoy the best services and outcome, since they can expect easiness in managing and arranging their traveling trip, and they don’t have to spend a fortune for it. Customers still have the power to control the market, although Expedia seems to dominate the market. With more people looking for flexibility in the traveling service – while the online traveling world is still filled with smaller players willing to conform to their customers’ demands – it will be difficult for Expedia to really take control of everything; not to mention that people tend to switch to other providers that provide less complicated arrangement (and less expensive service).

Equifax Customer Service Phone Number: More about the Company

16March
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A credit reporting company is responsible in managing the clients’ financial data and information – especially when it comes to their credit report and score – so they can make wise financial plan. The credit report is meant to provide information to them whether they have healthy score or not, or whether they should change their financial planning or not. There are a lot of credit reporting firms in America alone, but the biggest and the longest operating one is only a few, which includes Equifax Inc.

If you are one of the clients in Equifax, you certainly know how to contact the customer service – whether through online or by phone. It is crucial to keep Equifax customer service phone number handy, in case you need to ask for more information, you want to ask them related to your subscription, or you want to make complaints. It is always logical to know a company’s customer service number, especially if you are using their products or services.

About Equifax

As it was mentioned before, Equifax is one of three biggest credit reporting companies in America, besides TransUnion and Experian. When compared to the other two, Equifax is the oldest since the business started in 1899. So far, the company has gathered and collected more than 400 million of information from their credit holders and clients around the world. The company has its main headquarter in Atlanta, Georgia, and it is a global firm that is operating within 14 different countries around the world (especially through online), has more than 7000 employees, and has $1.5 billion revenue on yearly basis. However, despite the great success the company holds, its journey hasn’t been easy and it is in fact, quite shady. They have been involved in some legal issues and problems, and been accused of many things.

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The Long and Shady History Since the early set up, Equifax has been stationed in Atlanta, Georgia. Its name was Retail Credit Company when it was started in 1899. The development and expansion was fast, actually, since they managed to open offices in different spots in America as well as in Canada by 1920. In fact, by 1960, the company became one of the biggest credit firms in America, responsible for important data of millions of their clients in America and Canada. They were responsible to manage data for credit reporting activity, but they were also responsible to make reports to insurance companies (auto, life, medical, and fire insurance) so the companies could understand the habits, health history, finance, and even moral conducts of people applying for insurance. Aside from making reports to the insurance companies, Retail Credit Company was also responsible for investigating insurance claims and making employment records. The Retail Credit Company was the head, but most of the credit work was done by the company’s subsidiary, Retailers Commercial Agency.

The problem started when the company began to sell information they have to anyone interested. In fact, there was accusation that they were willing to give rewards to their employees if they managed to collect negative information of the clients. The US Congress held some hearings in 1970s resulting in Fair Credit Reporting Act enactment concerning consumers’ rights about their personal information. Because of the hearings, it is believed what driven Retail Credit Company to change names into Equifax in around 1975 to get better and cleaner credibility.

Since then, the company decided to expand more of their services and markets up to England, where they had to compete against other companies like Experian and DUN & Bradstreet. They didn’t include insurance reporting anymore, but they focused more on credit reporting, from these years to 2011, the company had done some acquisitions and sales of their divisions. Now, Equifax Workforce Solutions is included one among 55 other contractors that are hired to work on HealthCare.gov site by the United States Health and Human Services Department.

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The Services Equifax has been dealing with business to business relation focus, providing consumer credit and also insurance reports to businesses, such as insurance firms, utilities, healthcare providers, banks, government agencies, financial institutions, and also credit unions. Besides credit and insurance reports, they also provide information of one’s payment history and personal credit, showing how an individual’s behavior and habit when it comes to repaying loans or paying bills. Equifax also sells credit reports, demographic data, analytics, and software. Later on, around 1999, they added their services to identity theft and credit fraud prevention, which is designed to provide better protection and security for the customers.

Those who use their credit cards so often must understand how important a credit score and health is. When you have positive credit score – you don’t exceed the usage’s limit, you pay your bills on time, and you make timely payment – it is likely that you have good financials. Most credit card owners don’t really care about the status of their credit card, which is a shame, because it can show what kind of person you really are – whether you are discipline or you are a mess. Too bad, not many people understand that there are lots of people who also use the credit report service to check on them. Insurance companies, for instance, would likely check on your financials (viewed from your credit score) when you apply for insurance. Even your landlords will also use the service to see whether you are a qualified and discipline tenants or not.

The Customer Service Basically, contacting Equifax customer service is easy. You can log into the official site and go to the contact us section. Once you send your inquiries, you will get answer and response right away. You can also contact them by phone number – provided on the company’s information. Contacting them is easy; you can ask for information or even make complaints. If you want to look more into the company’s profile, you can browse around the site and you will be directed to different sections and pages so you can learn about the company in detailed manner.